Running a factory can be a hugely profitable enterprise, but it also comes with a considerable amount of responsibility. As the owner, you are responsible for the health and safety of a large workforce operating across a number of different departments – many of which require the use of heavy machinery and vehicles. Apart from that, the factory premises may make use of huge metal power doors or sliding doors such as those from Weiland Doors, which must be safe to operate and properly maintained to prevent hazards and injuries. Not only must you focus on safety measures for the good of your workers but also for the longevity of your business, as a costly repairs operation, hospital bill or legal suit could spell disaster for your finances. All in all, stringent health and safety measures are beneficial for everyone, so it is well worth investing the time and money needed to put them in place. There are countless different aspects to consider, many of which are specific to certain industries, but here are just 5 all-round essentials:
The first thing that you will need to consider even before your workforce enters the site is health and safety training. This can be conducted via a webinar (more info to be found at icwgroup.com), it all depends on how you need to train your employees and what would be the best method. By educating your staff on the latest in safe practices for your industry, you will fulfill a large part of your duty to them. You should send your staff on professional training courses, where they will be shown videos and techniques to help them carry out procedures effectively. In line with this, you should ensure that all of your procedures are designed to allow your staff to carry them out safely – most factory accidents occur as a result of trying to cut corners to save time, so it is essential that your staff understand the dangers of this and have enough time to carry out their jobs effectively. Key elements of safety training should include first aid, lifting techniques, and working with heavy machinery and hazardous materials. You should also ensure that training is refreshed throughout their careers.
- Safety Markings
Line marking in and around your factory is another key element to ensuring a safe workplace. As your surrounding roads, paths, and flooring are all sure to see heavy footfall and wear from machinery, it is essential that you maintain your markings to keep them fresh and bright. This is a key element that safety inspectors will look for, so it is important to get it right. Faded or non-existent markings could result not only in delays to your operation but also potential crashes and accidents. If you are seeking line marking services in Melbourne, there are professional services available who can carry out work to the highest standards to ensure that your workplace is in line with safety regulations at all times.
Insurance is absolutely essential, not only due to legal requirements but also for the safety of your workers and your business at large. While you can put in place all the safety measures under the sun, none of that guarantees that accidents won’t happen – it only mitigates the risk. For this reason, insurance is indispensable as a safety net in case the unthinkable does happen. It will provide anyone involved with the access they need to funds and medical care following an accident and it will offer your business the chance to recuperate quickly following problems with machinery or vehicles.
Signage is incredibly important as it clearly denotes areas where there may be a danger or hazard, while at the same time marking essentials like fire escape routes and doors. Dangerous equipment should always be stored responsibly and labelled clearly and hazard tape should be used to mark areas with dangerous surroundings, with safe walkways clearly marked. Any hazardous substances should likewise be stored with care and labelled very clearly.
- Safety Equipment
The safety equipment you need will depend greatly on your particular industry, but it is important that your staff are provided with the appropriate clothing to keep them safe from harm. This may include goggles, overalls, hard hats, gloves, face masks, steel-capped boots, hi-vis vests and ear defenders. Equipment-wise, it is essential to use forklifts or dollies to lift heavy items and elements such as sprinklers should be fitted throughout your building.
By putting the right procedures in place, equipping your staff with the relevant knowledge and preparing your site with the correct markings, signage and equipment, you will be well on your way to running a safe factory.